Justin and I agreed this was our favorite meal of the trip. Ola was a great find away from the slew of restaurants on Collins St. And the Cuban food here was out of this world.
To start, we got the most amazing rolls. They were really like sweet corn biscuits. Flaky and delicious. Then we got a very unique crab salad. It had jicama, chayote, green apple, butternut squash, and pumpkin seeds all dressed with lemon mojo. And of course there were hearty chunks of king crab meat!
Next we got the vegetable empanadas. They were filled with sweet corn and plated over sauteed mushrooms.They came with dabs of two sauces. The first was a dark huitlacoche sauce that had excellent heat to it; serious spiciness to complement the sweet corn. And the dabs of yellow sauce added some extra sweetness.
For my entree, I got the braised pork. It had been slow cooked in a black bean sauce and served with steamed yucca, celery root, and black trumpet mojo. I wish yucca were more common because I would eat it every day if I could!
I added some sweet plantain mash with bacon to my main dish. Justin and I would have been completely satisfied with the entrees alone, but all the sides on the menu sounded so uniquely amazing that we had to try one. And this mash was a great choice.
Justin got the pollo criolo: jidori chicken over truffled aioli, papa criolla with porcini mushrooms. Yes, the menu descriptions were hard to decipher, but it's really no big deal because I now realize it's impossible to order something bad at this restaurant.
As with the side, we didn't need a dessert, but it just didn't seem right to say no to Ola's dessert menu. We got deconstructed key lime pie. The meringue was so light and fluffy with just the right amount of sweetness. I wouldn't have minded a higher meringue to key lime filling ratio, but no matter. The tangy key lime was also superb. As was the crunchy graham cracker cookie.
I will definitely eat at Ola again if I make it back to Miami, and in the meantime I'll keep hoping that they'll open a location in LA. Or I'll just keep searching LA for a Cuban restaurant this good, even though I don't think any others could compare.
Happy customers :) Bye, Ola.